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Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
Home country: United States
Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 02:57 AM
Number of posts: 73,254

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Open Carry, Funding Likely Police Issues Next Session

Within hours of the recent ambush killings of five Dallas police officers — and again 10 days later, when three Baton Rouge officers were killed — messages of respect and support for law enforcement coursed through the nation's social media, filled the airwaves and prompted countless press releases.

As politicians nationwide rushed to reiterate their support for police, Texas elected officials figured prominently in the calls for a greater societal embrace of officers and more protections for first responders who perform some of the toughest jobs.

"As Texans and Americans mourn the loss of our men and women in uniform, we must continue to remember that police officers put their lives on the line every day to ensure our safety and our freedoms," Abbott said in a statement a day after the July 7 Dallas shooting.

But while grateful for the rhetoric, law enforcement groups have seen some disconnect between the professions of support and the track record of Texas elected officials in listening to their concerns.

Read more: https://www.texastribune.org/2016/07/23/texas-law-enforcement-groups-brace-gun-funding-leg/

Former guard admits he didn't check on Sandra Bland before she died, lawyer says

A former guard at the Waller County Jail told the attorney of Sandra Bland's mother under oath that he falsified entries on a jail log, making it appear as though he had checked on Bland in the hour before she was found dead, when he had not.

According to a report from the Houston Chronicle, a source familiar with the state's investigation of Bland's death confirmed prosecutors were aware of the falsified records, but a Waller County grand jury decided not to indict anyone with the sheriff's office.

Cannon Lambert, the attorney for Bland's mother, said Rafael Zuniga, the former guard, told him he noted in the jail log that he saw Bland in her cell at 8:01 a.m., less than an hour before she was found hanged with a noose made from a plastic bag.

But according to the former guard's new testimony, no one checked on Bland at that time, Lambert told the Chronicle. Zuniga said he had been given instruction to log future checks before they had been completed, according to the Chronicle's report.

Read more: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/crime/headlines/20160722-former-guard-admits-he-didn-t-check-on-sandra-bland-before-she-died-lawyer-says.ece

Alaska parental notification abortion law struck down

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Supreme Court on Friday struck down a state law requiring parental notification for girls under age 18 seeking abortions, agreeing with pro-abortion rights advocates that the mandate approved by voters in 2010 was unconstitutional.

Justice Daniel Winfree, writing for the majority, said the court was not deciding whether abortions should be available to minors without restrictions but that the abortion notification law violated Alaska's constitutional equal protection provisions giving the same rights to all Alaskans.

In a concurring opinion, Justice Dana Fabe disagreed that the law violated the girls' equal protection rights but said she believes it violated their right to privacy.

"I believe that the Alaska Constitution permits a parental notification law, but not one that contains provisions that are among the most restrictive of any state's notification laws," she wrote.

Read more: http://hosted2.ap.org/KSMAN/1ef3ed09cd3c41b3bd5a078bc509e7a1/Article_2016-07-22-US--Alaska-Abortion%20Law/id-a20526bcc1b34605b46597286baabbc2

Kansas attorney general sues to get Guantanamo Bay records

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' attorney general sued the U.S. Department of Defense Friday, accusing the government of failing to produce records related to President Barack Obama's proposal to move detainees from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to the Army prison at Fort Leavenworth.

Attorney General Derek Schmidt filed the lawsuit in federal court in Topeka. Schmidt's office said in the lawsuit it has not received any records from a freedom of information request filed in December.

"Our concerns are heightened because the administration admits it has the records we requested and initially promised to produce them but now are inexplicably dragging their feet until after the November election," Schmidt, a Republican, said in a statement. "We are seeking some court-ordered sunshine now to discourage mischief later in the final weeks before the president leaves office."

The Defense Department last year surveyed seven potential sites for housing the prisoners, including Fort Leavenworth. But the Democratic president's campaign promise to close the prison for terror suspects in Cuba has been blocked by strong congressional opposition. In fact, Congress has included prohibitions on moving Guantanamo detainees to the U.S. in annual defense policy bills.

Read more: http://hosted2.ap.org/KSMAN/1ef3ed09cd3c41b3bd5a078bc509e7a1/Article_2016-07-22-US--Closing%20Guantanamo-Kansas/id-4b80685b92b4406992ea9605afdafa39

Judge to monitor Kansas' actions on gay marriage for 3 years

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A federal judge told Kansas on Friday that for three more years he will monitor its compliance with the U.S. Supreme Court's historic decision legalizing gay marriage across the nation.

U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree issued a permanent barring the state from treating same-sex couples differently than opposite-sex couples in allowing them to marry or extending "other rights, protections, obligations or benefits of marriage" to them.

"It's a shame that the court had to spell this out," said Joshua Block, a senior attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, a lawyer involved in the lawsuit that led to the order.

Spokeswoman Jennifer Rapp said Attorney General Derek Schmidt advises agencies to fully comply with the U.S. Supreme Court decision and would do so without Crabtree's order.

Read more: http://hosted2.ap.org/KSMAN/1ef3ed09cd3c41b3bd5a078bc509e7a1/Article_2016-07-22-US--Gay%20Marriage-Kansas/id-5d08a316ea644908a2faa0fba3fc42a5

Ex-KKK leader Duke tries political comeback in US Senate run

BATON ROUGE, La. -- A quarter century after his credible run for governor of Louisiana rattled the national political establishment, white supremacist David Duke has jumped into the crowded competition for a U.S. Senate seat in his home state, receiving rebuke from Republicans who don't want him running on a ballot as a member of their party.

Duke — once an avowed Nazi sympathizer who headed a Ku Klux Klan group — fell back into relative obscurity after losing a 1991 runoff to scandal-scarred Democrat Edwin Edwards.

A follow-up presidential run from Duke went nowhere, and 10 years later, he pleaded guilty to bilking supporters in 2002 and spent a year in federal prison, although he later declared he did nothing wrong. He had occasional run-ins with authorities in Europe, such as the time he was detained by Czech authorities in 2009 on suspicion of denying the Holocaust.

On Friday, however, he declared "the climate of this country has moved in my direction," as he registered to run on the Nov. 8 ballot as a Republican for the Senate seat being vacated by David Vitter. Duke said he was partially spurred by the recent shooting deaths of three law enforcement officers by a black man.

Read more: http://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/national-politics/article91459557.html

Kansas Health Foundation donates to relief fund for Eureka tornado victims

The Kansas Health Foundation has donated $50,000 to the Emporia Community Foundation to help provide aid to victims affected by the tornado that struck Eureka on the evening of July 7.

The Emporia Community Foundation established the Eureka Tornado Relief fund to benefit victims of the tornado that damaged more than 150 homes and businesses. Thanks to ample warning and appropriate responses by residents, no deaths or injuries occurred.

The tornado was strong enough to be rated an EF-2 by the National Weather Service, with maximum winds of nearly 135 miles an hour.

Information about how to contribute to the tornado relief fund is available on the Emporia Community Foundation website at www.emporiacf.org.


Lawsuit against Kris Kobach over Kansas voting rule will be heard next week

A court will hear a challenge next week to a temporary Kansas regulation that would throw out the votes of some people who registered to vote at state motor vehicle offices.

The 3rd Judicial District Court in Topeka will hear the latest voter registration case against Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach just a few days before the Aug. 2 primary. A hearing has been scheduled for 1:30 p.m. July 29, according to court records.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed the suit, Brown v. Kobach, on Tuesday.

Kobach’s office helped quickly approve a temporary state rule change earlier this month that would keep more than 17,000 voters who did not show proof of citizenship when they registered to vote from getting their ballots counted in state and local elections. Those voters would be allowed to vote only in federal elections.

Read more: http://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article91141492.html

California's top court rules in favor of Gov. Brown's water project

The California Supreme Court cleared the way Thursday for state water authorities to do environmental and geological testing on private land for a proposed project to divert Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta water to the south.

The ruling capped six years of litigation by delta property owners, who challenged the state’s right to enter their land without compensation.

In a decision written by Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, the court said state water authorities could proceed with testing — subject to various conditions — on more than 150 properties.

The ruling overturned a state appeals court decision that favored the delta owners but also gave property owners more rights than they had previously under state law.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-water-court-20160721-snap-story.html

Albuquerque mayor says $20M plan will revive Route 66 motels

ALBUQUERQUE — A $20 million restoration project is poised to revive two shuttered motels along separate sections of Historic Route 66 in Albuquerque, where the neon signs of motor inns once lit the highway's miles-long run through New Mexico's largest city.

Standing in front of the boarded-up De Anza Motor Lodge on Wednesday, Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry announced plans for the renovation project, saying it will turn the sprawling inn and another historic road stop, the El Vado Motel, into extended-stay motels with breweries and food carts.

The city and private developers will fund the project, Berry said.

"Everything we're doing on this — the signage, the lighting along the way, the landscaping — we're trying to stay true to that historic Route 66 form," he said. "That's what Route 66 is known for are these motor lodges."

Read more: http://www.alamogordonews.com/story/news/2016/07/20/albuquerque-mayor-says-20m-plan-revive-route-66-motels/87365690/
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